Tag Archives: drone attacks

US Drones Hit Pakistan Hideout Of Taliban

The American policy of sending drones over Pakistan and Afghanistan in search of Taliban targets has become among the most controversial of the war against terrorism. This past weekend, a drone attack on a Taliban hideout in Pakistan resulted in the killing of over two dozen militants and destruction of a headquarters. The Taliban admitted: “we lost 28 mujahideen in the missile attack. The drone fired two missiles and several ‘guests’ are among the dead.” ‘Guests’ ordinarily refers to foreigners fighting on the side of the Taliban. This was an example of a successful drone attack, but many others invariably result in the death of innocent civilians which serves as a recruiting plus for the Taliban.

Perhaps, there is a way out of the current problem of drone attacks which come without consultation with Pakistan officials and then result in anger at the violation of the nation’s sovereignty. It might be necessary to create a joint command of trusted Pakistan officers and American air force personnel which would be responsible for authorizing such bombings. The problem is so many Pakistan military leaders are sympathizers with the Taliban so it is necessary to identify those who can be trusted in the Pakistan military.

Are US Drone Strikes Effective?

A lesson of the Vietnam war that apparently has still not been learned by the United States military is using air power to deal with guerrilla movements is an ineffective strategy that only does the reverse– encourages people who are being bombed to shift support to insurgents. Senator John Kerry, newly appointed head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee met with Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and among topics discussed was the effectiveness of drone strikes. The Pakistan leader insisted drone attacks were counter-productive and only resulted growing anger since so many air strikes result in death to civilians as well as the targeted insurgents. Kerry promised to review the entire drone program in the coming year.

Senator Kerry urged Gilani to cooperate with Indian authorities in uncovering who was behind the Mumbai attack. He also promised additional aid to improve police forces in Pakistan. It is time to recognize insurgents are defeated on the ground through a combination of political, economic, and military forces.

Pakistan Pleads With US To Halt Drone Attacks

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari met with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in an effort to persuade American military leaders to cease sending drones to attack suspect militants hiding in tribal regions of northwest Pakistan. A government spokesman said Zardari had tried to get across to the Bush administration, “these drone attacks are unproductive, and they are contributing to alienation as opposed to winning people over.” Missiles are believed to be fired from unmanned planes and there have been a reported 18 such attacks since August. Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahood Qureshi emphasized the attacks invariably cause the death of innocent civilians which creates anger among many in the community and thus aids efforts of al-Qaeda.

President elect Barack Obama said he will discuss these issues with Pakistan. “Because Pakistan is of the view that military means is not the be-all and the end-all.” Hopefully, Obama will listen to the voices of Pakistan and readjust US military strategy.

Madness of Iraq Continues In Death And Destruction

The madness that is kown as the war in Iraq continued over the weekend with an attempt on the life of Iraq’s president, bombings in Sadr City and an explosion that resulted in the death of four US Marines. Iraq’s first lady escaped unharmed from a bomb attack in downtown Baghdad although four of her guards were injured. The United States military said 11 al-Qaida insurgents were killed while a powerful roadside bomb killed four Marines in the deadliest attack in months. Amid the violence, Admiral Patrick Driscoll vowed to maintain crackdowns on Shiite militia and al-Qaida insurgents. US military used drones and Bradley fighting vehicles to kill 18 militants n Sadr City.

Iraq’s health authorities said at least 10 people, including two children, were kiled in the apst 24 hours in Sadr City. The miitary aspect of fighting militants continues, but, little is said about the diplomatic component of fighting terrorism in Iraq. There are threats, there are bombs, but what is being done to bring together disparate groups within Iraq society in order to create the semblance of a unified government? Death and destruction are the order of the day.